“Stubborn” Akwa Ibom lawmaker apologises to Akpabio under duress as governor withholds assembly ticket he won

Onofiok Luke

An estranged political godson to Governor Godswill Akpabio of Akwa Ibom State, Onofiok Luke, has begged the governor for forgiveness.

Mr. Luke, a serving member of the Akwa Ibom State House of Assembly representing Nsit Ubium state constituency, had in the past attacked Mr. Akpabio for allegedly maligning Ibibio people in the state.

In an open letter titled, “At a Time like This,” the lawmaker had lambasted the governor over some of his (Mr. Akpabio) policies he said were detrimental to Ibibios, the majority ethnic group in the state.

Ostensibly embarrassed by the lawmaker’s audacity to challenge him, Mr. Akpabio and his wife, Unoma, those familiar with the matter said, vowed never to allow Mr. Luke get a second term.

Associates of Governor Akpabio told PREMIUM TIMES that in the bid to block him from securing a second term ticket, the Akpabios allegedly sponsored another aspirant, Solomon Ekokoi, to challenge Mr. Luke at the PDP primary.

However, in a rare stroke of luck, Mr. Luke, who is a former President of the National Association of Nigerian Students, NANS, defeated the first family’s anointed candidate and clinched a ticket to return to the House.

Mr. Luke’s success at the primary, our sources said, dealt a devastating blow on Mr. Akpabio and his wife, who immediately launched a fresh plot to retrieve the ticket from the “stubborn lawmaker”.

The Akpabios, we learnt, subsequently insisted on having Mr. Luke tender an unreserved apology to them while also recanting some of the accusations he levelled against them in the past.

Unwilling to forfeit the ticket, Mr. Luke, on Thursday, published an apology in one of the local tabloids in the state, begging the governor to forgive his many transgressions.

“It is common knowledge that since 2002 I have enjoyed a very deep and beneficial father-son relationship with Your Excellency.,” Mr. Luke said in his apology letter.

“However, in the last one year, that relationship of 12 years has suffered seriously due to actions and inactions attributed to me.”

“As a political son, I hereby take responsibility for the comments, unfavourable words, positions, ideas and ideology espoused by me which may have contradicted Your Excellency’s disposition.”

Mr. Luke continued, “I apologise for the harmful toll which these may have caused Your Excellency. Specifically, I apologise for the use of the phrase, ‘admonish the Governor’, in my open letter to Akwa Ibom people, entitled, ‘At a time like This’. As a younger person, I can’t admonish an elder in our culture. All these are sincerely regretted.”

PREMIUM TIMES however learnt that even after apologising, the Akpabios are reluctant to forgive the Nsit Ubium lawmaker, a development that has prompted prominent politicians in the state to intervene.

It took the intervention of party elders and stalwarts from the area to halt the planned cancellation and subsequent re-run of the House of Assembly primary in Nsit Ubium state constituency of the state.

Mr. Luke could not be reached to comment for this story. Calls to his known mobile telephone line failed to connect. So also is the governor’s spokesperson, Aniekan Umanah, who also is the state commissioner for information.


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  • Nwa Aba {Biafran}

    Dear Gov
    as a true Christian and a democrat
    please forgive him

    • Robby

      Typo error. De dude above me.

  • King Carlos

    Like Jonathan like Akpabio. Governor acting like an emperor. As a matter of fact, Nigerian politicians are worse than military administrators.

    This can only happen in a country where all state institutions are weak and non existential.

    • Robby

      Who is this one spewing rubbish. Oga don’t let de hate on akpabio’s… Lemme not insult someone on the Internet. No wonder they say imbibing image a Mfon. I am an ibibio. Truth must be told. Don’t be so myopic cuz of hate. U r a tribalism.

  • Mamapikin

    Backward country, failed state….leadership failure, from a rotten head to its leperous toe.

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  • Aninta

    Impunity brews with no shame, fear or regret in PDP.

  • favourtalk

    That’s what PDP stands for. When you said the truth, they attacked you or even force you out. We want a change where anybody will be able to challenge all. Because nobody is perfect, so the nation is not just about anyone. We need change

  • blueeyedkitten

    definition of democracy: govt of the godfather by the godson and for the godfather. nobody should ever define democracy as people oriented govt again. atleast in nigeria. that would be an aberration to the real institution of democracy. lets continue the cycle of impunity. all hail impunity!!!

  • Collins Ikem Ejiofor

    No matter what happens, the sins of Akpabio is already in the public domain and before the throne of the Almighty and the Great Judge, who will pay everybody according to his or her works,God is not mocked!

  • Romberg

    I love this piece. Will glaze it. Excellent.

  • MaskedPhantom

    Wither the APC apes?

  • JP

    Though PMB is my man but this write up is a fact. When we see the fact it has no other name.

    • Iskacountryman

      fact changes…

  • AFRICANER

    Great Job as always, Aribisala! A+